– a horror opera


Scored for 4 singers and 7 instruments:

2 sop., 1 mezzo., 1 baryton, flute, clarinet, trombone, harp., violin, viola, cello.

Duration ca 60′.

Music: Karin Rehnqvist
Text: Kerstin Perski.

Commissioned by Rikskonserter.



Bella’s mother is about to get married again. But Bella does not want a new father. She refuses to be her mother‚s well-behaved, sweet little bridesmaid and escapes from the wedding.

This becomes the starting point of an inner journey.

Bella meets Thorko, a critical, conceited character from another world. He convinces her to come with him to the Beauty school, where the Countess Mammalia, who is five hundred years old, will teach her how to become a well-behaved, sweet little girl.

But the ugly, rejected daughter of the Countess soon makes her understand more about the place to which she has been taken. Sooner or later all nice, well-behaved girls are sacrificed to the bloodthirsty vampire.


Beauty school is an opera with mythical undercurrents. Its main theme is timeless and ever present, emphasizing the constant demands on children to please the adult world with their behaviour and looks. But it is also about the courage to defy these demands, the possibilities and strength of friendship and about every human being´s right to be everything, both nice and nasty, ugly and sweet.




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